Thursday, 26 October 2017

The Oliver Winterbottom Diaries – July

For the past few months, Oliver Winterbottom has been keeping a diary detailing the proceedings surrounding the release of his autobiography A Life in car Design. In this third instalment, we take a look back at July. If you have missed the previous posts, you can catch up with May and June here. 


2 July – Party at ex-Lotus Peter Riches (Chief Technical Officer, TOCA), sign his book. 
Patrick Peel (CEO East Anglian Air Ambulance) plans to buy one.

3 July – Siân at Veloce sends the June reviews of the book. thevirtualdriver.com correctly spots my incorrect (for 40+ years) spelling of Giugiaro, but totally incorrect, says Sylvia Kimberley was his sister, not his wife. Mike was amused and then spotted he had spelt his name wrong! 

6 July – From Alan at Club Lotus: "We've sold five copes so far, which is pretty good for us, as we know many members will read about the book in Club Lotus News, and then buy it at a discounted price elsewhere."

8 July – A phone call to my room at Chesford Grange is Chris Harris, ex-Lotus, who has arrived 'on spec' from Donington; he lives and works in Paris! Brought book which I sign. Wonderful surprise.

9 July – TVR Big Bad Wedge Fest at Chesford Grange. Sign about 16 books, and get one and sign for Martin Lilley, past owner of TVR company.

17 July – Message from Mark Webb, TVR Weekend organiser: "I'm looking forward to some quality time to start reading your book, a friend called me the other day and said he was three quarters of the way through it and loving it … He said it's quite funny in places, and I thought, well, it would be … Oliver does have a good sense of humour."

Siân from Veloce sends message that Jon Burgess, editor of Classic Car Buyer, would like a chat. I email him that, being a bit deaf, please email me.

19 July – My sister's Norwich financial advisor, Ian Dilks, has book and would like it signed!

21 July – Visited Clive Chapman at Classic Team Lotus. Presented a book, which I have signed using Colin Chapman's propelling pencil, which he still has. This was quite moving. I have seen many very accurate freehand drawings done with that pencil. Clive is interested in stocking the book on his website. I contact Emma at Veloce to ask for them to contact Clive.

24 July – Daughters and Pat come to dinner at Queens Head. Anne brings her neighbours book for signature – another one sold!

25 July – Emma from Veloce responds and includes the 'dropship' process, where Clive could sell the book from Veloce, avoiding stock problems. 

26 July – I contact Ketts Books, Wymondham, RE the September 10 Vintage Day. I have agreed to attend. Emailed them with 'dropship' idea, and offer to provide a book 'on loan' for prospective customer examination.

28 July – Receive email from Tom Smith, owner of Prototype Lotus M90/X100. Says that ReMarque, the magazine for Lotus Ltd USA, has published a book review similar to the Amazon one. Await copy. He has put the prototype on sale, asking price $114,000 (£86,741).


You can purchase your own copy of A Life in Car Design via our website, and make sure you don't miss the next chapter in Oliver's diary, coming soon!